New Here, So Damn Scared of Going Deaf in the Future...

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by GosDonLedjet, Nov 17, 2016.

    1. GosDonLedjet

      GosDonLedjet Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Concert
      So, first my background story (Warning, long story):

      I've had more or less Tinnitus ever since attending a hardcore punk gig in four years ago. It's was hell the first week, but since then I've grown almost totally used to it. I pretty much only hear it when it's totally silent such as in the morning and going to sleep. In some periods it's been worse like when fighting a cold, bad sleep, heavy stress, one time after a flight etc.

      So, last friday I was at a punk concert with some friends, and of course I was such a giant idiot that I did not wear any protection. I didn't have any earplugs at home, and I didn't stop and buy any because I had to head straight home to meet up with my friends after an exam, and then to the gig. If I had been any smarter I would have stopped at any store any time of the days before to pick up some plugs, but yeah.. Luckily someone gave me some plugs at some time through the gig (Don't really remember that clearly due to punk rock and alcohol...) but it wasn't enough.

      So, afterwards I had the usual post-concert worse type of ringing, and I noticed a weird feeling in my left ear, like it was clogged or something. As my friends stayed at my place for the weekend I didn't really think more about it (I remember that I've had something similar sometime before for a short period of time after a concert). But then the days passed, and the feeling didn't disappear...

      So now it's Thursday and I'm really scared... I guess I've never really actually thought about the fact that hearing damage is cumulative and that my lack of thinking as a youth could really come back and bite me in the ass in the coming decades as actual real hearing loss and eventually deafness, even though I've always been aware of it deep down...
      The sheer thought of not being able to hear the sounds of nature, the birds chirping, the waves, the sound of the wind and all that in the future brings tears to my eyes as I'm writing this.. Not to mention never hearing the music I love or the voices of the people I love again.. Right now I feel like I would rather to blind than ever have that happen to me.
      I'm studying to become a nurse and right now I'm worried that the occupational noise can add further hearing damage and bring me closer to deafness in the future. But then voice of reason tells me that noise in the healthcare is probably very minor compared to noises in the industry and military sector etc.

      My situation right now is that the clogged feeling in my left ear is still there. It has probably diminished somewhat, but the thing is that my anxiety and being so scared of a future like above makes it hard to tell as it is constantly on my mind, even though I try to stay distracted and think of something else. A few times a day i feel a pain-ish sensation in my left ear, but that has probably also diminished somewhat.

      My tinnitus feels like it is more than before, but still not so loud as some other people explain it. I still need to be in a somewhat quiet environment to notice it. I actually don't think my hearing is noticeable worse off than before, but then again because of the anxiety it is hard to tell. The clogged feeling in my left ear makes me worried so it feels mentally that it's probably screwed up in some way, even though I can't see any difference in my hearing when I try to compare my ears. I don't see any difference compared to before when it comes to volume on the TV, hearing people talk is not noticeable harder either, but then that worrying in my skull tells me that I wouldn't be able to tell the difference compared to before if I had hearing loss.

      I did some online hearing tests, and I found that I only hear up to around 16khz on both my ears, but only very faintly on almost the highest volume on my left ear... I know this is not how a 21 year old with healthy ears is supposed to hear, so obviously I've lost some of my high pitched-hearing along the way. I don't know how much this tells me about hearing loss and it scares me further.

      The logical part of me tells me that it's not been one full week yet and the situation will improve over the next couple of weeks, and that a majority of it all is probably in my head, but that doesn't remove my underlying feeling of fear. I've booked a time at the local clinic on monday for an actual hearing test and to get my ears checked out, hopefully by seeing a professional and getting a clear picture of my hearing situation will calm me down...

      One thing's for sure though, I am never, ever ever ever attending a concert or going clubbing without earplugs. I'll make sure to always keep a box of them around at home and have a couple in my pocket when travelling. The sad ironic thing is that I've been pretty good at protecting my ears for the past year, wearing protection for the most part, cutting down on the volume and the amount of listening to music on the headphones etc, but then came friday...
      But, the lesson is truly learned, and this is going to be a clear wake up-call for me. Hopefully then it can mean that one concert of heavy music saves me and my hearing from the damage of several more years of carelessness about my hearing. I really hope so...
      I know that I'm probably going to spend the rest of my life with tinnitus(Unless they by some miracle manage to provide a cure through stem cells research or something, but I guess I shouldn't get my hopes up, but then many parts of the medical field today was probably seen as impossible for 40-50 years ago...), and I've pretty much learnt to accept that, but I just can't explain the fear I'm feeling of eventually gradually going deaf or near-deaf, even though it's decades away...

      Sorry about the very long story. If anyone had the patience of reading through all that and have any comments that can make me feel better or diminish my fear or anything, please just write them, it will be extremely appreciated!

      And yes, before you tell me, I know how utterly and unspeakable idiotic it was of me to go to a loud punk gig without any protection for my ears... :(
    2. MikeL1972

      MikeL1972 Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Hi @GosDonLedjet

      Welcome aboard.

      Your first step should be to go the clinical route. What I mean is go to your local ENT and have him or her check your ears, followed by a hearing test. That way you will know where you stand.
      • Agree Agree x 1
    3. billie48

      billie48 Member Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      not sure
      Sorry about your fear and suffering from that. It is a very common reaction for people with new T or when there things seem to get worse. One thing I learn from my T & H experience is never fear nor imagine something bad in the future based on the worst time of my suffering. I made the mistake of trying to jump to conclusion what my future would be like after T & H, that it must be total dark and gloomy and no other way. I made that mistake and suffer badly. I am sure many members have done that. We are just being human. But now I find my future is never like what I imagined at the worst time. Even with my T still going loud, I don't give a dime to it. It can't extract an oz of mental suffering from it any more. The brain just hardens to it over time.

      I agree with Mike. Go get an ENT to check things out first. Things may not be as bad as you think. If you need it, hearing aids may help. There is no need to fear about deafness so much down the future. Anything can happen. Why pay the price for that? I have always mentioned Zoe Cartwright's story as my guiding light and she was completely deaf at young 15, and she lives a normal and productive life (Positivity Thread page 14, 15). So give yourself a break from the fear.

      Perhaps you need to deal with the stress and anxiety issue. When the brain is in high anxiety, it can always zoom in on the negatives and the worst scenarios in life. Try something to calm the nerves. If you don't want the drugs from doctors, perhaps give the natural alternatives a try to see if they can calm your nerves. If you need some suggestions, you can look up natural alternatives such as Melatonin, Lemon Balm, Valerian, Hops, Catnips, Passion Flower, Chamomile, Lavender, Kava, etc. You can do google search or check for each of them to know how people review these products, and see if you can take them as a supplement. Check out this site on using natural herbs for helping to sleep or to calm the nerves. Take care. God bless. /
    4. AUTHOR

      GosDonLedjet Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Concert
      Thank you extremely much for your replies. I've booked a time at the clinic on monday to get my ears checked (Called the EMT reception in town at first but they only look at your ears after you've been referred to them by another instance or something, and told me to call my local clinic). Like I said, I don't think I have any considerable hearing loss, it's not that I've or anyone in my company noticed any actual harder time hearing, even directly after a gig, but better safe than sorry.

      I've pretty much accepted to live with my tinnitus. It is a bit louder now but it will probably diminish a bit in the coming weeks. Even if it stays on a higher level I feel like I can accept it. Even on this level it isn't something majorly disrupting my life. I can still fall asleep pretty fast so no problem with insomnia etc. My brain will help me getting used to it like you said.
      I could see it as a constantly warning sound reminding me to protect my ears. In that light maybe this higher level of T will save me from further years of clubs, concerts etc without proper protection for my ears. Who knows, maybe that will save me from doing real noticeable damage to my hearing?

      Nevertheless, I'm probably gonna go buy a clock radio tomorrow that allows you to listen to radio for a set amount of time when you go to sleep and then it turns itself automatically off. Even though I have no trouble falling asleep it would be nice to fall asleep to some talk on the radio instead of just my T and the refrigerator sounds.

      I don't think I have a problem with anxiety or depression otherwise in my life.. This week (and especially yesterday) is much worse than my usual life. Having moved out to college, living alone and not having anyone good to talk to about this (I don't want to call and unnecessarily worry my parents) probably added up on the fear and anxiety. Luckily I found you guys :)
      Otherwise I of course have my dark moments but not so bad that I think it needs adressing or drugs or so. But thank you for your tip anyhow!

      So, my plan is to check out my ears at monday and get a real picture of how my hearing is doing. Until then I'm gonna take it easy this weekend, of course not go out at any loud activities but not just staying at home super-scared of any noise either, I think that will probably make it worse. Probably gonna try to stay away from the Internet hearing tests as well, I don't really trust their quality and I think they do more harm than good by keeping my mind occupied by constantly worrying... But from what I could tell on the results, I seem to be generally fine as in no trouble hearing minor sounds or talking with background noise (except that I couldn't hear over 16khz, that's obviously not good but then a lot more people even younger than me were in the same situation or worse in the comments, so I'm not sure what to make of that...)

      So anyhow, today I'm planning to a long walk for a couple of hours in the november sun and enjoy all the sounds I can hear! :)
      (I'll bring my plugs, just in case an ambulance passes with sirens blasting or something...)
    5. AUTHOR

      GosDonLedjet Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud Concert
      By the way, do you think I am correct in the assumption that by caring properly for my ears from now on, the risks of getting aging hearing loss so bad that I need hearing aids is somewhat minor, and even then the risks of hearing loss so bad that you get deaf and can't be helped even by hearing aids are very minor?
      (also considering it's all hopefully several decades away as I'm 21 years old, and hopefully the hearing aids in 20-30-40 years have advanced majorly by the technological discoveries etc. I mean todays hearing aids is probably very advanced compared to the ones in the 70s and 80s)

      I mean, from my knowledge it takes pretty much to get hearing loss at a major level, and even then hearing aids can help you to a very very big level, so the risk of hearing loss beyond the help of hearing aids are even way further smaller. (But of course, they still exist and the hearing can be further damaged by other things than just aging)

      Am I completely wrong in thinking like that? I mean, you hear about people with T all the time, but to me it feels like it's pretty rare to hear about people who has gone from just having T and then hearing loss at a higher level, and even way more rare about people going from T to deteriorating hearing loss and even deafness. The logical part of me tells me that the risks are very slim of all that. (But yeah, of course it's a possibility anyhow)

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